06/15/2010 01:38 pm ET | Updated Nov 17, 2011

Father's Day Gifts: What Dads Really Want

Father's Day is here, a special time of the year where I like to imagine that the heavens command: Release ye men from the House of Dog. Most guys I know love Father's Day for the simple reason that we aren't forgetting about some other holiday that we're supposed to remember. You know, the anniversary, the birthday, the anniversary of an anniversary (yes I did actually slip that nonsensical sentence by the editor) that we always seem to be forgetting. And therein lies the beauty: Father's Day is, for the most part, doghouse proof (mother's and wives birthday's permitting).


While no two dads are alike, fathers are first and foremost men and with all our other responsibilities we don't exactly get a ton of time to unwind and get in touch with our primal roots like we did when we were teenagers. Some fathers are easy to shop for. My own dad for instance is incredibly content with a 10-pack of socks (gold-toe if you're wondering). Anything more sophisticated and he will stare at it like an isolated tribesman from the Amazon would upon being presented with a Macbook Pro. He will politely accept the offering but stare at it with a bemused expression that says "I suppose I could inflict blunt force trauma on unsuspecting game by clubbing them with the titanium casing (didn't foresee that use did you Apple engineers?) But nothing beats my poison tip darts."

So what am I getting at? Dads gravitate toward the basics that let Men be Men, so keep it simple people. If it's another tie "The Chieftain" (Dad's stage name in this mildly amusing metaphor) will surely toss it aside as soon as you are out of eye shot. Incidentally, tribal weaponry isn't the worst Father's Day gift you could give. Here are some gifts with universal guy appeal, in short, the things we would love to get and why we love them.

Father Son Photo Shoot
This is a gift I will treasure forever: a photo shoot with my son.



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Give Dad something he won't be able to get in just any old restaurant. A tasty treat that goes great with brunch. Hey, you know its good -- it has Bacon!

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It's a knife. It's got a custom paint job. Enough said, Dad will love it.

This is really an incredible invention. Our wives may rule the bedroom TV and subject us to Desperate Housewives, but with this device we can literally watch TV anywhere! For road warriors hungry for English language shows when abroad, this is a god-send. It's also surprisingly easy to use, my own dad still has trouble with an ATM card but manages just fine with this device. The slingbox application lets you stream live TV to your mobile phone from your home cable box. Control your own destiny, change channels, this app has to be seen to believe.

Since Dad drinks the "good stuff" he will need a pair of bottle opener flip flops from Reef.